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The Volcker Rule: Comments and Questions

Posted by Larry Doyle on December 10th, 2013 6:02 AM |

The big news on Wall Street today is the reemergence of the Volcker Rule intended to make our banking system safer from the perils of proprietary trading activity.

The question that America will hear bandied about until it makes your head spin is “What exactly defines proprietary trading?”

My ‘sense on cents’ response is that not unlike pornography, proprietary trading might be hard to define but you know it when you see it. Let’s review and cross-examine The Wall Street Journal’s take on this newly proposed rule which attempts to accomplish the following: (more…)

Volcker Sends Warning Shot to Fed, Wall St, and DC Recommended

Posted by Larry Doyle on May 30th, 2013 9:27 AM |

In what can only be described as a Sense on Cents Instant Classic, perhaps the most highly respected chair in the history of the Federal Reserve, that being Paul Volcker, delivered a tremendous address yesterday at the Economic Club of New York.

For anybody who cares about the well being of our markets, our economy, and our nation, I strongly recommend you take a mere ten minutes to fully read and absorb the wisdom of Volcker’s words.

What are some of the highlights? (more…)

Amar Bhide Makes Case for Volcker Rule

Posted by Larry Doyle on February 20th, 2012 8:50 AM |

Why do you think former Fed chair and widely respected central banker Paul Volcker paid a visit the other day to SEC head Mary Schapiro?

I would gather that Mr. Volcker was not there merely to exchange pleasantries. No, clearly Mr. Volcker was exhorting Ms. Schapiro to withstand the pressure currently being applied by many members of the Wall Street-Washington Incest society to water down the Volcker Rule which would curtail proprietary trading on Wall Street. (more…)

Volcker Locks and Unloads on Wall Street and Washington

Posted by Larry Doyle on September 24th, 2009 12:15 PM |

Former Fed Chair Paul Volcker

I find it interesting, but not surprising, that former Fed Chair Paul Volcker’s testimony to Congress this morning has received little to no coverage by major media outlets. Why? With few exceptions, the financial media plays along with the financial industry which pays the bills while relegating investors and the American public to the bleachers.

Recall that just a week ago I wrote “Volcker Launches Bombshell on Wall Street and Washington.” I highlighted Volcker’s direct hit:

While the insiders on Wall Street and Washington pander about real financial regulatory reform, former Fed chair Paul Volcker yesterday hit ground zero on this hotly debated topic.

The heart of financial regulatory reform is centered on the implementation of leverage by our largest financial institutions. The leverage is exercised in a wide array of activities, both on and off-balance sheet. The capital utilized by the banks in these activities is credit that has not and will not flow directly through to the economy. Why? The banks believe that they will generate a greater return on the capital via proprietary activities rather than facilitating client business and addressing customer needs.

Today, Volcker locks and loads and unleashes another volley on the wizards in Washington and their incestuous brethren on Wall Street. Whatever you may think of Volcker as a central banker, I hold him in high regard for elevating the debate at this critical point in our country’s economic history. Regrettably, President Obama’s adviser, Mr. Larry Summers, has taken Mr. Volcker’s chair away from the table. Yes, this is the same Mr. Summers who The New York Times described this past April as having received A Rich Education . . .

Mr. Summers, the former Treasury secretary and Harvard president who is now the chief economic adviser to President Obama, earned nearly $5.2 million in just the last of his two years at one of the world’s largest funds, according to financial records released Friday by the White House.

Impressive as that might sound, it is all the more considering that Mr. Summers worked there just one day a week.

Although I digress from my focus on Mr. Volcker, I find it enlightening that the man in Washington who has pushed Volcker away from the table stuffed himself at the Wall Street trough. Back to Mr. Volcker. (more…)






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